Michaela Merz


1 Comment

Switzerland: VAT changes for imports of low-value goods from 1 January 2019


Due to the change in legislation, non-established sellers of “low-value” goods into Switzerland will be obliged to register for VAT if they generate more than CHF 100,000 (approx. USD 100,000) of sales of low-value goods per year.

Low-value goods are defined as imports where the VAT charge does not exceed CHF 5. At the currently applicable Swiss VAT rates these are shipments of CHF 65 at the standard VAT rate of 7.7%, or CHF 200 at the reduced VAT rate of 2.5%. Import VAT and customs duties are not levied upon the importation of goods if the amount of import VAT does not exceed CHF 5. Continue reading


Leave a comment

Lavrin and the story of lifelong fraud


Lavrin didn’t care much about rules. Where he thought he wouldn’t be caught, he simply ignored them.

He never paid social security contributions for his cleaner and when he became self-employed, he deducted all her wages as business related costs, although she chiefly cleaned his home and cooked for him. He always drove his car too fast, but never fast enough for him to lose his driving licence. He fixed the cruise control so that on the autobahn he never exceeded 139 km/h and in town he never drove above 65 km/h.

When he bought clothes in Milan, with scrupulous precision he cut off all the clothing labels. He claimed refund of the Italian VAT, but he never declared the import for customs and VAT in Switzerland (although his purchases had a value of well over the 300 francs). Continue reading


Leave a comment

Stockholm and transience


The tax authorities and the tax consultants met in Stockholm for an exchange of views. That is always useful and each time I am astonished at how quickly the thoughts and the implementation of digitisation is advancing among the authorities.

I was very impressed by Ruanda, which had built up a new VAT system, in which the VAT due is never paid to the seller but goes directly into the account of the tax authority. According to the authority, the refund is completed within a day. And the vouchers, which the individuals receive on purchase, are really vouchers with which one can claim the money. An ingenious system for preventing fraud. Continue reading


Leave a comment

Germany: “Boehringer Case” – EUGH C-462/16, 20 December 2017- new development


The German Federal Ministry of Finance (MoF) has published a decree (dated October 4, 2018) with respect to the VAT treatments of mandatory rebates.

Within this decree, the MoF states that mandatory rebates according to the drug discount law (“Arzneimittelrabattgesetz”) do entitle the taxpayer to reduce the relevant tax base for VAT purposes. Continue reading


Leave a comment

LIECHTENSTEIN: Liechtensteinische Steuerkonferenz 2018


Die Liechtensteinischen Steuerkonferenz findet wieder statt.

Wann: 27. November 2018
Wo: Rathaussaal, Stätdle 6, 9490 Vaduz

Um mehr über die Agenda, die  Biographien der Speaker sowie Informationen zur Anmeldung zu erfahren, klicken Sie gerne hier. Continue reading


Leave a comment

Poland: Obligatory registration and product fee payment in Poland: Waste Act


If you do business in Poland you might be obliged to register in freshly established Waste Database due to recent legislative changes in Poland.

Registration obligation
According to the Polish Waste Act, every entity is obliged to enter the waste register, if they have the below listed transactions in the Polish territory:
Whilst the 5 first positions are rather self-explanatory, the latter 2 items may require further explanation. Continue reading


Leave a comment

Switzerland: Non resident VAT taxpayer does not need to pay TV charge as from 1.1.2019


FTA – Tax liability for radio and television business levies

Bern, 30.08.2018 – Only companies with their registered office, domicile or permanent establishment in Switzerland subject to VAT are subject to the business tax for radio and television. Companies without a registered office, domicile or permanent establishment in Switzerland that are subject to Swiss VAT, however, do not have to pay a business tax for radio and television. This is stated in the explanatory report on the Radio and Television Ordinance. The Regulation will enter into force on 1.1.2019. Continue reading